What's a Good Diet for Preconception?

QUESTION:

Dear Nutritionist,
Hi there! I have a couple questions for you. What is a good diet for a woman who is trying to conceive? Is there anything I should avoid or things I should make sure to eat? Any advice in this area would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks!
Julia

ANSWER:

Julia,
When you are trying to conceive you should eat somewhat like you would be if your were pregnant. That way if you do become pregnant you are one step ahead! That means a healthy well-balanced diet (eating from ALL of the food groups daily), regular exercise (always check with your doctor first!), good hyrdration and a prenatal vitamin/mineral supplement (speak with your OB/GYN about what supplement is best for you). It is also helpful to be at a healthy weight.

There are certain foods that women who are pregnant or who might become pregnant need to be cautious of. Some of those include fish (this web site will give you all the information you need on fish), caffeine (cut to no more than 300 mg/daily), undercooked foods, and alcohol to name a few. Once you do become pregnant there are even more do's and don'ts to follow.

You might want to check out my book that will be out in January of 2005 entitled, The Everything Pregnancy Nutrition Book. The book goes through what to eat and what not to eat during pregnancy and how you can make sure you are doing all the right things before pregnancy!

Good luck!
-- Kimberly A. Tessmer, R.D., L.D